“Washin’ everything I own except my shoes”

mvc-019fHere’s Joe Walsh singin’ the all night laundry mat blues, in a 33-second YouTube video.

I have a long history with londry-mats (as Froggy would call them). We had a washer and dryer in the old Superior Street homestead — in the dank, dark, gray-green greasy limpopo dungeon. I hated going down there without The Commander. It was a big open room with a huge old octopus of an oil furnace in the middle of it. Back around the other side of the furnace was a room right out of the Blair Witch Project or Hannibal Lecter. I was terrified of that room but I could explore it as long as moi mommy was down there with me doing the laundry.

My beauteous tortoise-shell cat Twinkle had her first litter of kittens down in that dungeon (I know….). She had four kittens that time. One was a “monster”, i.e., much larger than average and dead on arrival. I never saw that kitten because the parental units hastily disposed of it. Another kitten (beautiful calico) had a nosebleed and died that day. We managed to give Spot and Puff to new homes. After the second litter of kittens (yes, I know…), The Commander had had about enough. She gave Twinkle and the two kittens that weren’t adopted to a local farmer. There were five in that litter. They all lived. The Engineer and I and the Mullin twins got to watch the last four be born in an old wooden whiskey box by the wood stove in the moomincabin.

Anyway back in the day… During the summer, when we were kids at the cabin, we took the the laundry to a laundromat. When your only running water is cold water to the kitchen sink from your uncle’s well via a garden hose, you do not have electric laundry equipment. Actually, you do not even have indoor toilet equipment. When you have multiple loads of laundry to do, it is faster to take it to a laundromat and do it all in parallel, rather than take it to your house and spend a whole day doing it in serial. I can’t remember the name of the laundromat but it was somewhere up on Ashmun hill and I was fascinated by it. I guess I must’ve figgered out then that laundromats would be one of my lots in life? At least occasionally. Also, there was probably a pop machine or whatever…

Skipping over a whole lot of historical crap… We have always had a washer and dryer in the Landfill (not saying that those always worked perfectly but that would be a whole ‘nother story) But during the summer, back when I took the beach urchins up to the yooperland for as many weeks as I could get away with until somebody kicked me back across the Mackinac Bridge, there was a period of time when I became the washerwoman of Birch Point Beach.

I would organize the laundry (except for The Comm’s personal stuff, of course) and load it into the POC along with laundry detergent and at least $20 in quarters. No, I didn’t wash the shoes. That’s just a typical shoe pile in the photoooo, at least for that era. I had laundry down to a science. I would get there when the laundry mat opened, right at 8:00 AM. I would load up three triple-loaders and one or two smaller musheens for more delicate things. If I needed a few grokkeries, I would head over to Glen’s and be back in time to put the laundry into the dryer. Like about six dryers… I could usually get the whole mess done and get back out to the moomincabin by about 10:00 AM.

Today I think I washed everything I could get my hands on. Windows. Linens. I hauled the Electrolux vacuum cleaner up and down the stairs to the Dungeon umpteen billion times. I hauled a step-stool in and out the door and up and down the stairs about a billion times. I cleaned all of the ashes outta the faaarrrrplace. I watched a YouTube video about how to replace a Rooooommba’s battery and then I replaced my loverly little Roooomba’s battery myself, although I did have to ask the GG to find me a blasted phillips screwdriver… When I dropped that battery in, she sang a zippy little happy dance.

We ended the day with Mouse, who came over here to print her tax forms and ended up having a ‘hattan and a smidge of our steak dinner before heading off to the Plum Market and home or wherever.

And here are the Yardbirds, just for fun. I listened to these guys as a young teenager. They were older than me then and they are older than me now (and maybe some of them are dead but I didn’t google that). Sigh.

Not a bad day overall.

Kayak Woman

One Response to ““Washin’ everything I own except my shoes””

  1. Margaret Says:

    I hated doing laundry in a laundromat. (or even in my sorority at UW) It does sound like a very productive day. Mine wasn’t so much, although I had a coffee date, went to a memorial service, got my tire fixed(screw in it) and worked on fixing my printer. (no luck yet)